A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Louboutins…

HG Nude Pumps

As I mentioned earlier this week, I’ve made a list of items that I feel would help complete my wardrobe.  And near the top of my list, was a pair of nude pumps.  Not just any pair.  The Pair.  Louboutin Simple Nude 70’s in patent leather.  Gorgeous, aren’t they? When it comes to aesthetics, they are everything that I revere.  Classic, elegant, impeccably styled, iconic.  They are the Mr. Right of shoes. (Pricey too.)  In the last 6 months I’ve succumbed to the lure and tried them on three different times, and each time felt their transformative power.  But I always decided to “sleep on it,” and walked away.

Monday, I’d decided to bite the bullet, release the hounds, take the plunge.  These shoes would be mine.   I stepped into the Saks shoe department with confidence and determination.

The store had just opened.  While waiting for suited Sales Associates to come streaming out of the back room and offer assistance, I decided to peruse the jumbled sale racks.  I knew I wouldn’t see “my” Loubies there, but wondered if there might be some alternatives to consider and rule out.  (Then I could feel that I’d made an informed, rational decision, you see.)  That’s when I spotted these…

…and thought they might be fun to try on.  I still wasn’t seriously considering them instead of the Louboutins, but something about them charmed me.  I loved the color, the floppy bows, the shirring on the sides and the heel height. 

The Sales person brought out both the Louboutins and the Pradas for me to try on.  And….I liked the Pradas better, immediately.  Not only were they MUCH more comfortable, but their touch of whimsy that the Louboutins lacked also felt like a better fit.  I liked how they looked on my feet (I guess I’m still a sucker for a pointy toe), and could see dressing them up or down, wearing with skirts or pants.  At this point, I knew how much the CL’s cost, but hadn’t looked at the price on the Pradas yet.  I vowed to make my decision based on everything but price. I ran myself through the decision tree.  I gut-checked.  And then went with the Pradas.

I can hear some of you gasping in disbelief.  And I surprised myself by taking a pass on “my” Loubies, but I realize now that when I tried them before and walked away, my hesitation wasn’t just about price; something else was holding me back. Maybe the Louboutins were just too serious, too expected.  Maybe they felt too much like Red Carpet shoes for my Non-Red-Carpet life.  Maybe I worried that they’d never really be comfortable enough to wear for any occasion that required more than a few minutes on my feet.  Maybe they just weren’t as right as I’d imagined.

Un peu girly.  I luff them!

Sometimes Mr. Right turns out to be the one you didn’t see coming.  The price on the Prada shoes?  Marked down from $595 (same price initially as the Louboutins), by 60%!!!.  I paid $235, and walked out of the store with a big smile on my face.  I still smile every time I put them on.

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  1. Delurking here to say “What a great choice!” So. Much. Better. Glad to hear the CL’s aren’t necessarily worth the hype. The heel height was always too high for me anyway but glad to hear some designer shoes are comfortable. May give ’em a try.
    I read your blog daily and so enjoy it.

  2. Hello There!

    Glad you liked the magazine article. Word is spreading I tell you!

    Great Job.

    At first I thought, Nooooo! You should have gone with your dream shoes instead of being swayed by a bargain (always good mind you).

    Then I look at the Louboutins agains and thought no you made the right choice. The Pradas are probably more practical for your lifestyle: not that I know what that is but I’m guessing more than premieres and getting papped out at dinner.

    Anyway, good choice. Wear them in good health.

    Sally. x

  3. Sometimes, we go shopping for what we THINK we need (I have shoes and a little black dress in the closet that I never wear based on that thinking). And then there is the stuff that calls to our hearts. And we wear it to death. Your end choice is much more YOU, captured you and therefore you will wear them all the damn time. A bargain.

  4. Stunning! A much better choice, i think the simple 70’s are frumpsville, the shape is just so unnattractive.
    I love my nude Louboutins but i’ve got the peep toe one with the hidden platform I’m not sure what it’s called- I wear them all the time when I’m going out, a nude shoes is all you need.

    Again, applauding your choice, they are very beautiful.

  5. je crois que vous avez fait un très bon choix car il paraît que les Prada sont bien plus confortable que les Louboutin … elles sont très jolies

  6. Those are much more you. You like clothing that has a twinkle in its eye. I am so pleased that you found those shoes. You know the crusade to buy for one’s real self, one’s real life? I think you just did it. Aaaaaand on sale:).

    You know I love my black Louboutins. Simple 70s, and they are comfortable. If I got nude I want the Loub nude peeptoes. But I’ve got less of that twinkle than you so it makes perfect sense. Just like when you decided to shun boxy jackets.

  7. Perfection, and en solde! (?) That pink hint to the beige, the lower heel, the details, everything. Way to go, Pseu, you amazing shopper you!

  8. Those shoes are adorable! My Mom had had a pair almost exactly like them, that she bought when she was a young married woman in Paris(!) back in the fifties. They were a deep rosy fuschia pink. And as a little girl, they were the epitome of grown-up femininity.The soft nude pink is much more subtle, but the effect is the same to me. Just. So. Pretty! Brings you back to what fashion is really meant to do– create wearable beauty.

  9. I agree with everyone here. Comfort has to be a big component of any shoe purchase–and these shoes are adorable. I can see you wearing them all the time! Congratulations on meeting your new criteria so well.

  10. What a great story, I love it! I am not convinced about Louboutins, I have a pair (very prive) and they are undoubtedly the most uncomfortable shoes! It’s not the height, I can handle it, but something is just innately wrong with the shape. Sure they look good but…..

  11. Fabulous! Truly fabulous! The shoes, of course, but also your wonderfully told story and the way it exemplifies so much of what you’ve been learning and teaching here over the past couple of years — and so glad to hear you were rewarded by a crazy sale price.

  12. I’m sure this is considered blasphemy by some but I think Louboutins are overrated. They ARE lovely, yes, but I find them so uncomfortable and, dare I say it, boring – whereas I could walk miles in my Pradas, and love the quirky little details that make me smile every time I put them on.

    I think your new shoes are lovely!

  13. I think these are great. And sometimes it takes seeing something better to realize why a thing we haven’t been able to commit to isn’t “just right”. Congrats on the great find!

  14. You can just look at them and see how comfy and buttery soft the leather is. Perfect choice for une femme d’un certain age! Enjoy.

  15. The Pradas are infinitely better! I read an interview w Monsieur Louboutin who said he designs for looks, not comfort. I swear by my Pradas and Manolos–they look good AND feel good! Besides, the shape of your new Ne Plus Ultras is far more flattering…good choice!

  16. Shoe shopping….ahhhhhhh. Be still my heart.

    Fantastic deal on those shoes. And they are super cute. Congrats on a smart buy. Bet you’ll have those re-soled more than once.

  17. You are a shopping goddess! How did you manage to find something both sassy and practical at the same time?

    I think you dun good, kid. The Loubies are just a bit too expected for my taste… but I’m a big weirdo, as you know.

  18. Shoes need to feel comfortable and please the eye. When these two things match, you have made a good purchase.

  19. I think you chose wisely as you chose totally omitting price and brand – you went for use and comfort.
    I look forward to see you wearing these and getting every single penny out of them!

  20. Julianne – thanks! I think they will be quite versatile.

    Mary – thank you! I find most heels uncomfortable to varying degrees. But with the Louboutins, I was banking on them softening up and stretching out a bit, not always a given, especially with patent leather.

    Mazie – thanks so much, and I’m so glad you enjoy the blog! The heels on the 70’s are 3″ which is my max tolerable height, but yes, most CL’s are much higher.

    Sally – thanks again for passing along the article; I really appreciate it. The more I look at my new shoes, the more I love them and know I made the right choice.

    Rita – you’re right, and I always regret it when I put comfort second. LOVE the bows!!

    Sal – thanks! I think so too! 🙂

    Toby Wollin – that’s so very true. I’m learning to trust that feeling when I’m drawn to something, as long as the first blush is followed up with comfort and quality.

    Tabitha – thanks! Your Louboutins were definitely an inspiration, though I can’t wear as much of a heel as you do. But I’m very happy with my choice.

  21. Love your new shoes! And comfortable? Who knew? Now I’m just waiting for somebody to think up a new name for that color — it’s only “nude” if you happen to be that color yourself!

  22. argone – merci bien! Je les aimes beaucoup!

    Kalee – thanks! I’m glad I hesitated, as I definitely ended up with something much better for me.

    Orane – mille mercis! La boucle est ma favorite!

    Monalisa – thanks, me too!

    hostess – thank you, and yes they are definitely more fun. I definitely gravitate toward those pieces with a sly sense of fun/humor.

    Marguerite – thanks, and yes, the leather is lovely.

    Gretchen – thank you! Now that I’ve discovered Prada shoes, I’ll keep an eye out for styles I like.

    California Girl – thanks so much! Yes, I hope I wear these for many years. I need to go get a half sole put on them soon. (I do this with all of my leather-soled shoes, helps them last longer.)

    LPC – thank you, and you’re put your finger right on it. I almost wrote that these shoes winked and crooked a finger in my direction, but it’s true that I’m drawn to pieces with a bit of subtle humor.

    Nancy DaQ – thanks!

  23. Pearl – the list, yes, and trusting my instincts.

    dana – thanks! I know this one was part luck too, but I’m glad I had the sense to grab these.

    Katriona – thanks, and it’s so funny you should say that as last night I was wearing them around the house with my skinny black pants and I felt very 1950’s Paris!

    metscan – so true, and I feel I’ve found both with these shoes.

    Kathy – thanks, and I’m glad you enjoyed the story!

    Lorena – thank you, and I hope to get much wear out of these. I keep wearing them around the house and waiting for Spring.

    frugalscholar – thanks, and I definitely think both the Retail and Frugal deities were smiling on me…

    Susan – I’ve been sorry in the past when I’ve thought that I could overlook an uncomfortable shoe or that they’d be better once I “broke them in” so I’m thankful that these are so comfortable.

  24. A-Dubs – thanks!

    Terri – the Louboutins were a *little* bit uncomfortable, yes. I probably would have needed to have them stretched a little bit in the toe box. But the Pradas were much softer and with the lower heel were comparatively much more comfortable.

    materfamilias – thanks so much! Yes, I feel that I truly applied my criteria and trusted my gut reaction, and the universe rewarded my choice. I always gravitate toward designs with a bit of wit, and need to go with the flow rather than pushing myself toward more serious pieces.

  25. Anonymous – thanks, and yes, “quirky little details” are what I’m always drawn to as well. Serious and elegant may be admirable, but they’re not me.

    Carmie – so true! We should wear what makes us happy, otherwise what’s the point?

    Wendy B – thanks! That’s good to know about Pradas. I’ll be keeping a closer eye on this designer now.

    Rubiatonta – thanks, and if “weirdo” means someone with fabulous and distinctive tastes, well then wear that label proudly. And I’ll aspire to it. 🙂

    Tiffany – thank you, and yes, a very happy ending!

    lagatta a montreal – thanks so much. Sweet shoes and a sweet price; it just doesn’t get too much better than that!

  26. Beth – In My World – I tend to think of this color as “blush nude,” but am not sure how the fashion world calls it.

    Anonymous @ 650pm – thanks! It’s a very pretty color whatever it’s called.

  27. Oooh, I love a happy ending! Those are so pretty and you will get so much wear from them. And what a bargain, too!

  28. Ronda – you’re right, the world is unfair, and I’m so sorry to hear about your situation. If I had my way, universal health care would be the law of the land, and no one would have to scrape together funds to get necessary treatment. I hope that you’re able to get the care you need.

  29. I am sitting here wondering how I’ll afford the surgery I need, and there are people buying these…shoes.
    Sometimes the world is so unfair 🙁

  30. Hey, “to thine one self be true” applies to shoe purchases as well. I can see why they’d be a good fit for you…in all ways.


  31. They are adorable. I can imagine them on you — you in them.

    She who hesitates is not lost. 60%!!! Unbelievable. I’m seeing any annoying/disturbing quantity of 30% off prices on the early soldes. So annoying.

    Patience, patience. It’s not like I need anything or even have my eye on something, but you never can tell. . .


  32. Vix – thanks, and yes, I feel the shoes I chose are a much better expression of “mine own self.”

    Miss Janey – Thank you!

    Tish Jett – merci! I hope les soldes yield up something marvelous and d e e e ply discounted for you!

    Plain Jane – I know, it was an amazing price. I had to pinch myself.

    Semi Expat – thanks, and I agree, these suit me much better. The sale price was the icing on the gateau!

  33. Those nude Louboutins are so spectacular. But having tried on some Louboutins (no, I don’t own any, shameless shoe hussy that I am), I( know that some are comfortable and others, not.

    Your Pradas are flirty and adorable! (I think you did great!)

    But I’m still waiting for Christian Louboutin to adopt me. I know my feet would serve as muse, and my French would a-muse as well. What could be holding up the paperwork???

  34. I admire both shoes more deeply but if you convered the brands, put them side by side and asked me to choose a shoe that said “Pseu” I would chose the Pradas.

    FWIW every pair of Prada shoes I’ve owned wore like iron. (No longer have them only b/c my feed got a size bigger.) GREAT bargain!

  35. Big Little Wolf – Ha! I can’t decide which designer I should petition to be adopted. I think Miuccia Prada would definitely be on the list now. 😉

    Duchesse – thanks, and I’m happy to hear that Prada’s wear well. I do think these are definitely more me, which makes me ponder why I was initially so drawn to the other pair. Projection, perhaps?

  36. I had a pair of Amalfi nude pumps that were the best fitting and most comfortable high heels I’ve ever owned.

    Sigh. My dog chewed up one of them. I loved that dog. What an emotional dilemma!

  37. Your unexpected Mr. Right of a Pump has more personality and whimsy and they seem even more French than the ones you thought you were going to get. Gorgeous choice.

  38. LBR – thank you, and I agree! Finally got the Shoe Mojo to work on myself! ;-p

    Aunt Snow – oh no!!! I’m so sorry your favorite shoes got chewed.

    Genuine Lustre – Thanks! I have a post in the works about those items we buy for our fantasy life.

  39. Ooh, they are so cute – I love those bows and I love the texture and colour. Reminds me of real ballet slippers.

    As for the CLs, a woman I work with has them – she wore them as her wedding shoes – white strapless satin column dress with a soft nude-pink fur jacket. The outfit was gorgeous and those shoes completed it beautifully.

    We all just love what we love, oui?

  40. Oh these will go great with your new Chanel lipstick! I somehow prefer blush accessories over nude. I think nude can be a bit to strict while blush is a bit more whimsical but not girly like pink. In effect a perfect fusion of both worlds.